The Amalfi Coast is a place full of history and you must take the trip from Sorrento to Pompeii if you are visiting the Amalfi Coast. Pompeii and Vesuvius are two of Italy’s most popular tourist attractions and for good reason.
The Vesuvius rises on the Gulf of Naples in Campania and it is located on the east part of Naples. It is known as one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world, but it is famous for its flora and fauna.
Pompeii Ruins are the result of the eruption of AD 79 during the tour my husband and I learned all about Pompeii and its rich history. If you are exploring southern Italy and the Amalfi Coast, you should definitely make time to visit these unique and unforgettable spots…after all, for most people visiting southern Italy is a trip of a lifetime so when will you next get the opportunity to walk the perfectly preserved streets of a Roman city, stare into an active volcano or see the bodies of the people frozen in time?
A Guide To Visiting Pompeii
How To Get From The Amalfi Coast & Sorrento to Pompeii
The world famous Pompeii is 150 miles south of Rome, fairly close to Naples and for the trip is too long to make from Rome. It is an easy excursion from the Amalfi Coast or Sorrento to Pompeii so I suggest combining your trip to Pompeii into one full day with Mount Vesuvius, the famous volcano so you can experience both on a one day trip.
How to Reach Pompeii from Sorrento
Getting to Pompeii from Sorrento, Italy is really very easy: just jump on the Circumvesuviana train which runs from Sorrento to Naples, and within 20 minutes or so you’ll arrive at Pompeii. The entrance to Pompeii is right across from the Circumvesuviana station.
You can also purchase a private tour as we did via Viator tours. Our private English-speaking driver picked us up at the lobby of our hotel Onda Verde. On board of your Private luxury minivan, we headed to Pompeii to visit the ancient ruins of the city, visiting Anfiteatro and Domus with beautiful frescoes on the walls. Pompeii Ruins are a contrast between amazement and utter fright thinking about how advanced they were in architecture and how they lost their lives so suddenly.
Related Article: 7 Reasons To Explore the Amalfi Coast
We left fairly early in the morning to see this magical place that we had read about in all of the history books. The van ride was an adventure in and of itself. I drifted off momentarily and I woke up to the feeling of the bus hugging the curves up the side of a very steep Mountain. A very scary winding road and a reasonably long way up. I was immediately glued to the window as the bus shimmied up the mountainside as we passed fields of lemon trees hanging from the side of mountains – and the view just kept getting better and better.
Hours and Tickets To Pompeii
- 1 November to 31 March: 9:00am – 5:00pm
- 1 Aprile to 31 October: 9:00am – 7:30pm
- Open daily; closed 1 January and 25 December
- Pompei: Ticket price EUR 15 for Pompeii, discounts: EUR 7.50 (students between 18 and 24 and teachers). Free for children under 18.
- Herculaneum: Ticket price EUR 11 for Pompeii, discounts: EUR 5.50 (students between 18 and 24 and teachers). Free for children under 18.
- Free entrance the first Sunday of each month
- You can purchase a pass for both sites for EUR 20
Exploring The Ancient City of Pompeii
We finally arrived from Sorrento to Pompeii after and we began our journey exploring the ancient city of Pompeii. I thought I knew all about Pompeii because of everything I read in history books, National Geographic specials, and I just saw a movie about Pompeii on HBO. You believe you have a pretty good idea of what to expect, what Pompeii looks like, and the story that led to its destruction and preservation but you have no clue because history books don’t even begin to touch the surface of the history of Pompeii.
What To See In The Ancient City of Pompeii
Before Vesuvius’ eruption in 79 AD, Pompeii was an important port town for the ancient Roman empire, which controlled the entire Mediterranean Sea. Middle class, Pompeii was a classic port town filled with sailor’s hotels, bars, public baths, taverns, and brothels.
Pompeii takes visitors to the formerly bustling city of Pompeii to provide guest the best look at ancient Roman life. Our first stop was to see the Roman Forum then on to the theatre, whose acoustics are so good you don’t even need a microphone to be heard; next, we headed over to the public baths which have larger than life columns. Built-in 70 A.D., the Anfiteatro is the oldest-known Roman amphitheater in existence.
What Else Do You Need To Know About Pompeii
The story of what happened in Pompeii, as you walk over the cobblestones that are still worn with the traces of horse-drawn carts, admire handmade intricate mosaic sidewalks, explicit murals, and rough graffiti, and most of all when viewing the plaster death casts made of the victims in their final moments of life – becomes shockingly real.
Our tour guide walked us through the moments in the daily life of these ancient people, who were at the same time surprisingly modern. Remains of ‘take-out’ restaurants, brothels, homes, and shops all retain telling elements that let you know what went on in that very spot, simple and poignant signs of life speaking of an unfinished past. It’s kind of hard not to imagine Pompeii’s people walking around you, going about their daily business. Our guide was careful to reconstruct all of this for us, turning each ruin into a living monument.
What Do You Need For Your Trip From Sorrento to Pompeii
It can be exhausting to visit the ruins in Pompeii: the site covers roughly 20 miles and you will be walking along the ancient Roman streets made of large blocks of stone so your feet will hurt and hurt bad! There is not a shaded spot in sight so make sure you dress for the occasion. There are public restrooms, a café, and a number of picnic areas inside the site that are marked on the map, and you can stop there to rest and even have a small picnic.
- A bottle of water (that you can refill at one of the many water fountains);
- A sun hat;
- A map of the site, available free at the entrance.
Tip: choose one of the suggested itineraries to follow so you don’t get lost or, better still, visit with an expert guide as we did.
To see all of the major monuments in Pompeii, you will need at least 8 hours which was a bit much for us so I suggest the 4 hours instead to see the most important sights like the ones featured below.
The House of Faun
Next was The House of the Faun which was built in the 2nd century BC during the Samnite period (200 – 80 BC. Although the eruption was devastating, the layers of ash covering the abandoned town preserved artworks, like the mosaics of the House of the Faun, which would have otherwise been likely destroyed or decayed due to the passage of time.
The House of the Faun was named for the bronze statue of the dancing faun, a basin for catching rainwater; it has been moved to the center of the impluvium, as seen in the picture below.
Villa of the Mysteries
Next on our tour was the Villa of the Mysteries or Villa dei Misteri. The Villa is named for the paintings in one room of the residence. Although covered with ash the villa sustained only minor damage in the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, and the majority of its walls, ceilings, and most particularly its frescoes survived largely undamaged.
The Villa had both very fine rooms for dining and entertaining and more functional spaces. A wine-press was discovered when the Villa was excavated and has been restored to its original location. It was not uncommon for the homes of the very wealthy to include areas for the production of wine, olive oil, or other agricultural products, especially since many elite Romans owned farmland or orchards in the immediate vicinity of their villas
The ownership of the Villa is unknown, as is the case with many private homes in the city of Pompeii. However, certain artifacts give tantalizing clues. A bronze seal found in the villa names L. Istacidius Zosimus, a freedman of the powerful Istacidii family.
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Conclusion of Pompeii
Towards the end of the tour, we congregated in the ancient Forum where the half-standing columns and structures of Pompeii’s most important political and social center stand silently against the shadowy backdrop of the volcano. Pompeii’s horrific end was the most interesting aspect of this ancient Roman town but by the end of this tour it was rather Pompeii’s life, it’s daily existence that became the most captivating story.
Before you end your visit to Pompeii, turn around and take one last look at the impressive view of Mount Vesuvius in the distance. 2,000 years ago the still-active volcano erupted a cloud of gas, ash, and rocks. For hours it spewed, causing most of the residents to flee.
It took just one moment for the eruption to change and an avalanche of lava and rock to race down the mountainside toward Pompeii. Though Vesuvius destroyed the city, it also effectively preserved it, stopping life in Pompeii in its track and providing us with most everything we know about the ancient town.
If you are thinking of taking the day trip from Sorrento to Pompeii you will not be sorry! Pompeii is the kind of place that sticks with you long after your trip is over and the trip from Sorrento to Pompeii will be forever etched in our memories.
I purchased the Viator tour for my trip from Sorrento to Pompeii:
The Viator Tour includes the following:
- 4-hour Pompeii sightseeing tour from Sorrento
- Guided tour of Pompeii’s most famous sites
- This is a great shore excursion from Sorrento to Pompeii
- Tour the Forum, Thermal Baths, Lupanare and Vetti’s House
- Professional commentary and guide Hotel pick-up and drop-off
Have you taken the trip from Sorrento to Pompeii? Is Pompeii on your bucket list?
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